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William Arthur Lewis was the first black person to receive the Nobel Prize in a category other than peace. He once described his intellectual career as consisting of three phases: the history of world economics and development, industrial economics, and the economic problems of underdeveloped nations. In his Nobel lecture, he suggested that the least developed countries should concentrate on increasing their regional trade rather than being heavily dependent on the continued growth of the most developed countries. He believed that in this way, underdeveloped nations could eventually accelerate their own economies even as growth in the more technologically advantaged nations slackened.

Lewis wanted to study engineering but decided it would be pointless since, at that time, neither the government nor white firms would hire a black engineer. A brilliant student, he received a bachelor of commerce degree with honors from Saint Mary's College in Saint Lucia (1929 ...


Robert Tignor

Distinguished public intellectual, one of the founding figures of the field of development economics, which came to prominence after the Second World War. For his pioneering work in this field, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1979.

1.Lifetime of achievements

2.Academic career

3.Lewis s theory ...


La TaSha B. Levy

black economist, social critic, and public intellectual. Once considered the darling of Ronald Reagan's ultraconservative administration, Loury earned notoriety as a staunch critic of the civil rights leadership, affirmative action, and the problems of the so-called black underclass. Though Loury gained fame as a black critic of conventional African American politics, he underwent a political transformation by the late 1990s, steering away from the right-wing conservative political positions that had ignited his career.

Glenn Cartman Loury was born to working-class parents in Chicago's South Side, Illinois. Loury attended Southeast Junior College prior to earning a BA in mathematics from Northwestern University and a PhD in economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Loury subsequently served on the faculty at Northwestern and at the University of Michigan before becoming in 1983 the first black tenured professor in Harvard University's economics department.

Loury increased his popularity among white conservatives and conservative ...


Jennifer Vaughn

author, educator, and economist, was born to Everett Loury and Gloria Cartman (Roosely) Loury and grew up in Park Manor on the South Side of Chicago. Loury attended Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, graduating with a BA in Mathematics in 1972. He then continued his education as a graduate student in economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

Working at MIT under the guidance of the future Nobel laureate Robert M. Solow, Loury began to formulate a theory of “social capital,” the idea that family and community characteristics can influence wages regardless of individual ability. This was Loury's explanation for how “equal opportunity” might not guarantee “equal outcome,” an important part of the debate surrounding affirmative action. As long as social context was ignored, disparities in incomes between blacks and whites would not be eliminated. In 1976 Loury submitted his dissertation Essays in ...


Robbie Clark

Julianne Malveaux refers to herself as the “Mad Economist” because, she says, “you’ve got to be either angry or crazy…to interpret economic data and keep a level head. Some days I want to scream at the bifurcation and trifurcation in this country, the double standards and triple meanings, the way that the rich get richer, the poor, poorer and the rest of us more complacent.”

Recognized for her witty, insightful, and passionate commentary on economic and political issues, Malveaux is known as one of the nation’s most intellectually progressive economists, authors, lecturers, syndicated columnists, and civic leaders. Her voice demands attention as she argues some of America’s most complex social and economic issues with fierceness, conviction and humor. Cornel West described her as “the most provocative, progressive and iconoclastic public intellectual in the country.”

The oldest of five children, Malveaux was born in San Francisco, California, to Warren Malveaux ...


Malinda Williams

writer, journalist, economist, and commentator, was born in San Francisco, California, to Proteone Alexandria Malveaux, a social worker. She received an AB in 1974, an MA in 1975 in economics from Boston College, and a PhD in Economics in 1980 from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Malveaux served as a media intern for WFAA-TV in Dallas, Texas, in the summer of 1975 and as a junior staff economist for the White House Council of Economic Advisers in Washington, D.C., from 1977 to 1978. She was a research fellow for the Rockefeller Foundation in New York City from 1978 to 1980 and an assistant professor of economics at the New School for Social Research in New York from 1980 to 1981.Malveaux's first book, Black Women in the Labor Force, appeared in 1980, a collaborative project with Phyllis A. Wallace and Linda ...


Grant Lilford

Zambian novelist, civil servant, and economist, was born in 1933, in Feira, Mkando, in Zambia, and grew up in the Roman Catholic Church. He attended Katondwe Mission School and Canisius College, Chalimbana, before qualifying as a teacher at Chalimbana Teacher’s College. He then studied economics, history, and English at the University College of Rhodesia and Nyasaland.

From 1965 Mulaisho served as permanent secretary in the office of the president of Zambia, and then occupied other government posts, including permanent secretary in the Ministry of Education. He moved into the parastatal sector, serving as chairman of the mining industry and general manager of the National Agricultural Marketing Board. From 1971 he was chairman of the Mining Development Corporation (Mindeco), the recently nationalized portion of Zambia’s copper mining industry. He later served as economics advisor to Zambia’s President Kenneth Kaunda. Mulaisho served as governor of the Bank of Zambia from 1992 ...


Gary Kerley

conservative economist, political writer, and educator, was born in Gastonia, North Carolina, to Willie (maiden name unknown), a domestic, and Henry Sowell, who died before his son's birth. Because they already had four other children, Thomas's parents, even before he was born, asked for help in rearing the baby. Henry turned to his aunt, Molly Sowell, who was sixty; she and her husband named the baby Thomas Hancock Sowell, nicknamed “Buddy,” and raised him as their own. Willie Sowell died a few years later in childbirth and Sowell did not know until he was an adult that his aunt and uncle were not his real parents He was a fourth grader when in the 1930s the family moved to Harlem New York where Sowell grew up and attended the prestigious Stuyvesant High School He dropped out in the tenth grade to go to ...


Larvester Gaither

economist. Born in the town of Gastonia in segregated North Carolina, Thomas Sowell grew up in Harlem, New York. Due to difficult circumstances, he dropped out of high school and worked toward achieving his equivalency diploma by attending night school. He later joined the U.S. Marine Corps, where he developed a passion for photography. After passing Howard University's entrance exam, he studied there for a year and a half, then transferred to Harvard University to study economics. Sowell graduated magna cum laude from Harvard in 1958, received a master's degree in economics at Columbia University in 1959, and completed his doctorate in economics at the University of Chicago in 1968.

Since the late 1960s he has taught economics at several universities including Howard University the University of California at Los Angeles Cornell University and Amherst College His most prestigious post however has been as the Rose ...


Jennifer Vaughn

author, educator, and economist, was born Walter Edward Williams in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. His father and namesake was a latherer, someone who prepared foundations for the plasterer during the construction of plaster houses; he divorced Williams's mother, Catherine (Morgan) Williams, when Williams was a young child. Williams's mother was left to raise him and his younger sister alone in the Richard Allen housing projects, a predominantly low-income black neighborhood in North Philadelphia, until her marriage later to Thomas Burchett.

In his teens Williams held a number of low-wage jobs to help support his family while attending Benjamin Franklin High School from 1950 to 1954. Despite being economically one of the lowest-ranking schools in Pennsylvania, Benjamin Franklin provided Williams with a solid learning experience including no nonsense teachers and a first class curriculum Being black was not an excuse to do poorly in school Williams had ...